‘Sugar Man’, Alive And Well At Boston’s Orpheum Theatre

Finally, I scored a ticket to see Sixto Rodriguez, the enigmatic subject of the film ‘Searching for Sugar Man‘! I became aware of Rodriguez two years ago and have been trying since then.

IMG_7710

He has been playing to ever-increasing audience sizes, so instead of seeing him at an intimate venue such as Johnny D’s where he played 18 months ago, I saw him at the Orpheum Theatre which is not huge but is not intimate either.

Rodriguez

Rodriguez

I presume most of my readers are aware of Rodriguez’s story; that he released two well-received albums in 1970 and 1971 but never became a star in the United States. He was a huge star in South Africa, however; from what my South African friend has told me, everyone he knew had both albums. It took the release of the film in 2012 for most Americans to discover Rodriguez.

Rodriguez

Rodriguez

Last night Rodriguez played to a nearly sold-out crowd which was extremely appreciative of him. Unfortunately, my sense is that there were many people in the audience who don’t go out to hear live music often; there were continuous cat calls of ‘I love you Rodriguez’ which clearly became annoying to him (I was sitting in the third row and could see every pained expression on his face).

Rodriguez

Rodriguez

Rodriguez sounds great; his voice is still strong and his guitar work is as it was 40+ years ago. He is blind, or nearly blind, but that does not appear to have impacted his music in the least.

Rodriguez

Rodriguez

He has an excellent band with him; I was unable to understand their names, however, so I can only refer to them by their instruments. The guitarist was excellent; a true rock guitar sound. The drummer was good as was the bass player, who is from the Boston area.

Guitarist

Guitarist

Bass player

Bass player

Drummer

Drummer

The lyrics are obviously reminiscent of the politics and economics of the late 1960s, and I can relate to them well.  One of the things I particularly enjoy about Rodriguez is that his lyrics are as relevant today as they were then. They played songs from each album, including ‘Sugar Man’, as well as a few cover songs (notably, ‘Blue Suede Shoes’).

Rodriguez and Band

Rodriguez and Band

Opening for Rodriguez was a singer-songwriter named Cory Becker.

Cory Becker

Cory Becker

Cory played a short set which the audience liked a lot. He played solo acoustic guitar and has a lovely voice. I enjoyed his songs and would like to hear more of him; I overheard him telling a new fan that he’s working on his first album.

Cory

Cory

I am glad I finally saw Rodriguez perform. It was a fine evening of music. I wish my photos were better, but between the lighting (very low) and the wearing of hats, it was not to be.

About suze72

I've loved the arts all my life... I go to a lot of concerts, take lots of photos and want to share them. Every once in a while I do something other than a concert, too. The Boston area is full of opportunities to indulge my passion - I'd like to help make it yours too!

Posted on May 10, 2014, in concert reviews, music, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Rodriguez was great. His drummer and bass plater were average and the lead guitarist was hideous. Rodriguez would do well to ad a keyboard … In exchange for the drummer if he must. Cory Becker was outstanding.

    • Thanks for your observations. We obviously have a difference of opinion; it’s possible I was sitting too close to the stage to hear that the guitarist was ‘hideous.’ I find that sitting very close in most venues means the sound is distorted.

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